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Old 30-09-2011, 00:16   #1
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Turkey, Greece or Croatia ?

Good morning All,

We are just packing our boat up for winter so have already started thinking about 2012.

Next year we plan on doing things a little differently and will book a 12 month marina berth and cruise from there. Basically we feel we need a base so that family can visit easily. The question is where?

We have spent this year in the Western Med and next year will go around to the Eastern side. We still plan on doing plenty of cruising so we need some advice on where an ideal spot is that has a good marina, good airport access and a diversity of cruising areas within say a 200 - 300 nm radius?

From the charts and also from other posts on this site, it seems like just about everywhere fits the criteria but I would appreciate some of that first hand advice from some of you seasoned cruisers in that area.

Thanks
Brownie
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Old 30-09-2011, 01:15   #2
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Hi.
I am From Istanbul/Turkey.
All those places are beautiful.
Our Egean and Mediterannian coasts are very nice and clean.
I can advise you Bodrum for marina. D-Marin Turgutreis is a very good marina for example but there are more than 10 marinas in that area I think. You can find lots of wonderful natural bays in that area.
I am sure you love this place. If you want you can also go to greek islands from here, they are so close to here.
If you want more information you can contact me anytime.
My e-mail is muratakturk@hotmail.com

Best Regards and Good Sailing


Quote:
Originally Posted by Buena Vista View Post
Good morning All,

We are just packing our boat up for winter so have already started thinking about 2012.

Next year we plan on doing things a little differently and will book a 12 month marina berth and cruise from there. Basically we feel we need a base so that family can visit easily. The question is where?

We have spent this year in the Western Med and next year will go around to the Eastern side. We still plan on doing plenty of cruising so we need some advice on where an ideal spot is that has a good marina, good airport access and a diversity of cruising areas within say a 200 - 300 nm radius?

From the charts and also from other posts on this site, it seems like just about everywhere fits the criteria but I would appreciate some of that first hand advice from some of you seasoned cruisers in that area.

Thanks
Brownie
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Old 30-09-2011, 01:30   #3
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Turkishwaters.com - Ege ve Akdeniz'de Rotalar, Koy ve Demir Yerleri

This web site may be useful for you.

Best Regards
Murat Akturk
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Old 30-09-2011, 02:04   #4
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

As far as Turkey goes, there are 3 spots; Bodrum, Marmaris and Göçek, all with some cosn and pros.

-Bodrum, livier winds, both the sea and air temp. a bit lower than other options, decent marinas and haul/repair facilities, a number of Greek islands within 15-30 kts range.
-Marmaris, better protected, a bit warmer, probably the best in Turkey in terms of hauling/repair options. Best turkish cruising area along with couple of Greek islands around.
-Göçek is even warmer nd better protected, couple of marinas (they are pricey..) and too many motorboats in the season. Technical fcilites are not as good as in Bodrum or Marmaris, greek islands a bit farther..

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Old 30-09-2011, 02:09   #5
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

You won't really go wrong in any of those wonderful countries.

Turkey has a few advantages: Friendlier and more welcoming people, in some ways more developed (definitely more developed than Croatia), best food, cheaper and more up to date marinas and boating infrastructure, better transport links than Croatia (fly anywhere from Istanbul). Wonderful cruising grounds. Everything very inexpensive. Highly developed maintenance and repair infrastructure, high quality work at a bargain price. Outstanding place for a refit.

I also love Croatia. It's a wilder than Turkey, with both positive and negative aspects of that. Infrastructure is much worse -- expensive and mostly rather primitive marinas (if you care about that). Difficult transport. Poor maintenance and repair infrastructure. But incredibly beautiful, wild. Probably the most beautiful place I have ever cruised.

Greece -- people can be cantankerous and unwelcoming (not the majority, but enough to spoil the impression for some cruisers), horrifying bureaucracy. But when Greece and Turkey separated, Greece got 90% of the islands -- so the cruising grounds are spectacular -- by area, at least, the best of the three. Transport links better than Croatia; not quite as good as Turkey. Food is good. Not quite as civilized as Turkey.

I think most people in your position choose Turkey -- for the simple reason of available marina berths and boatyard services at a good price, plus good transport links. If you are planning to leave your boat in a marina when you're not on board. You would not be making a mistake, because there are a lot of other advantages, too.

All my humble, subjective opinion, of course.
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Old 30-09-2011, 02:13   #6
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

You have better information
I live in Istanbul and I have 10-15 days for summer holiday because of my work. This is why I didn't have a chance to go there with my boat. I have an house in Bodrum- Akyarlar Bay. It is a very nice place. If you want to ask anything you can contact me any time.

Best Regards
Murat

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Originally Posted by yeloya View Post
As far as Turkey goes, there are 3 spots; Bodrum, Marmaris and Göçek, all with some cosn and pros.

-Bodrum, livier winds, both the sea and air temp. a bit lower than other options, decent marinas and haul/repair facilities, a number of Greek islands within 15-30 kts range.
-Marmaris, better protected, a bit warmer, probably the best in Turkey in terms of hauling/repair options. Best turkish cruising area along with couple of Greek islands around.
-Göçek is even warmer nd better protected, couple of marinas (they are pricey..) and too many motorboats in the season. Technical fcilites are not as good as in Bodrum or Marmaris, greek islands a bit farther..

Cheers

Yeloya
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Old 30-09-2011, 02:20   #7
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Probably the most popular would be Marmaris, Turkey, at either Netzel marina or Yat Marine. Although the nearest airport is in Dalaman and quite some distance away. Gocek or Fethiye look closer to the Dalaman airport than Marmaris.

We have only been in the Western Med for 6 months. I'm sure others can provide better info. We sailed from Marmaris northward up the coast of Turkey and cleared into Greece at Samos; then island hopped across and coastal hopped up to Piraeaus. Several family members flew into Athens at various times over the summer and sailed with us to many Greek islands. Some family members flew into Athens and took high-speed ferries to meet us at Mykonos, then sailed various islands down to Santorini where they boarded a ferry back to Athens to fly home. This all worked extremely easily.

After all the guests departed after the summer, we then sailed east to our wintering location. This winter we are in Cyprus; but it could just as easily have been in Turkey. Wintering as liveaboards in Greece would not be allowed for non-Europeans due to the Schengen Treaty 90-day limits. Croatia would be too cold and far too expensive, IMHO. Turkey is the best bet for wintering.

There are probably lots of options for you to choose from. Committing to one marina for an entire year might not be the easiest option. All depends on where you want to sail with your guests. We found easier travel access for our guests to most of the Greek islands than to Turkish coastal towns.

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Old 30-09-2011, 02:20   #8
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Hi Sirs
You have very good information about Turkey.
I think you have been to here before.
in summer time I will be in Bodrum for a short while, I would like very much to meet you if possible.

Best Regards

Murat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
You won't really go wrong in any of those wonderful countries.

Turkey has a few advantages: Friendlier and more welcoming people, in some ways more developed (definitely more developed than Croatia), best food, cheaper and more up to date marinas and boating infrastructure, better transport links than Croatia (fly anywhere from Istanbul). Wonderful cruising grounds. Everything very inexpensive. Highly developed maintenance and repair infrastructure, high quality work at a bargain price. Outstanding place for a refit.

I also love Croatia. It's a wilder than Turkey, with both positive and negative aspects of that. Infrastructure is much worse -- expensive and mostly rather primitive marinas (if you care about that). Difficult transport. Poor maintenance and repair infrastructure. But incredibly beautiful, wild. Probably the most beautiful place I have ever cruised.

Greece -- people can be cantankerous and unwelcoming (not the majority, but enough to spoil the impression for some cruisers), horrifying bureaucracy. But when Greece and Turkey separated, Greece got 90% of the islands -- so the cruising grounds are spectacular -- by area, at least, the best of the three. Transport links better than Croatia; not quite as good as Turkey. Food is good. Not quite as civilized as Turkey.

I think most people in your position choose Turkey -- for the simple reason of available marina berths and boatyard services at a good price, plus good transport links. If you are planning to leave your boat in a marina when you're not on board. You would not be making a mistake, because there are a lot of other advantages, too.

All my humble, subjective opinion, of course.
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Old 30-09-2011, 03:08   #9
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Remember that in June-July meltem starts blowing all through Aegean sea north to south. It follows the coast, so, for example, it will blow into gulf of Gokova even though it's located east to west. It blows in the second half of the day almost every day until September. After, it calms down, but you can still get meltem every few days into October. This means that for every downwind sail, you get to beat into it to come back (unless you go early morning or at night).

Also, you say you want to choose a single base, and explore both Greece and Turkey from there. But to go from Turkey to Greece and back, you need to go through clearances, and each time pay for transit logs. Yes, some people ignore it and just hang the curtesy flag that they need, but do you want the risk? It's up to you.

Weather: Greek islands will be cooler because of the winds and deeper waters. Most cruisers who venture beyond Finike on Turkish coast in the summer consider it too hot (plus there's no wind). But before that cut-off point, there's a tonne and a half of stuff to see.

Greek marinas will be more expensive than Turkish ones, food on the islands is once again more expensive. But some of the islands are breaktaking...

Even so I am partial to Turkey, so here's the run-down: most cruising is happening between Bodrum Peninsula and Finike. North of Bodrum Peninsula places are gorgeous and less boats, but you start having fish farms. No matter where you are, you're end up within at most 30 min away from some ancient ruined cities, Alexander The Great war road, or Christian or Ottoman castles.

If you do decide to stay north, there's a very nice new marina, Didim D-Marin with all facilities, including swimming pool, sauna, gym, restaurants, supermarket, yacht services, etc. They are running promotional prices [at least for 2011 - need to check for 2012]. For us it's 7 EUR/sqm/month. This marina is between Izmir and Bodrum-Milas airports - about 1-1.5 hours to each. And there're concerts in Izmir all summer long with many A-list groups.

Bodrum Peninsula and south you start getting many more charter boats and around every major centre you'll get gulets with day-charters. Bodrum Peninsula marinas are the most expensive of the Turkish coast. At the same time you're close to Bodrum-Milas airport and all conveniences of a popular resort town even including international music, dance, arts festivals all summer.

A gorgeous place for a base is, imho, Marti Marina in Hisaronu bay. Gorgeous scenery, less boats. But it's far from airports and from conveniences.

A very popular place for a base is Marmaris. It's in a protected bay, there are thousand and one bays, coves, towns to go to within 1-2 days sail, it's not too hot in the summer, and it's cheaper than Fethiye. The cheapest and biggest marina there is Marmaris Yat Marin (20 min out of town) - of course there are several ruins within 30 min walk from there . Marmaris is about 1 - 1.5 hours from Dalaman, another big airport. Destinations from Marmaris: Hisaronu, Datca, Dalyan tombs, Fethyie, Kas, Kekova Roads, etc.

Fethyie is closer to Dalaman airport, but it's at the end of a 12-mile deep bay. If you go outside the bay, those 12 miles never go by quickly for us Good fishing. However, this bay also has Gecek and all small islands and coves between Fethiye and Gecek. Gecek frequently organises races and things and is somewhat known as a sailing centre. Marina prices there are more expensive and you will have to share space with many boats. Imho, Fethiye bay has the densest boat population because it's a bay of 12 x 24 miles and there are two big marinas with many boats just day sailing. It's very much worth visiting though.

Other places down the coast are farther from airports and don't have as well setup facilities to use as a base. They're worth visiting though! My most favorite place on Turkish coast is Kekova Roads, or straight near Kaleucagiz - protected anchorages, castle on top of a rocky hill with old-style Ottoman city leading to it, sunken city, sarcophagus in knee deep water, coves with mineral water seeping through the rocks, bays filled with cold-cold spring water on top and warm salt water at the bottom (very nice spear fishing there by the way), ruins of churches and roman cities. it's all there. And not too many boats. Imho worth a week or two of exploration. Just don't forget to take some food with you as the shops there are quite small. There are restaurants in the villages with good fish dishes.

If it was me doing it, I would have made my way through Croatia and Greece and ended up in Turkey by mid-August. Or hey, if you can do it for one more year, do Croatia and stay in Montenegro for the winter and then do Greece and Turkey the year after. In any case, in Turkey by mid-August, then spent some time around Bodrum, and made my way to a Marmaris base for the rest of exploration and the winter.

Official sailing season ends in Turkey by mid- or end-October, so most restaurants close, and there are many less boats. Air is cooler, but still pleasant 20-28 C. Water is the warmest all through to December. My other half and I call this time the golden season. You can get storms, so got to watch out for that.

Imho, best weather monitoring app for this area is zyGrib - very accurate even taking into account coastal effects.
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Old 30-09-2011, 03:27   #10
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Hi Buena Vista,
We've cruised all three countries during 2006/7 and I can only back up what Dockhead says about each. You'd enjoy time in any of them.
But if you meld in costs, need for maintenance, access by air - I's suggest you focus on Turkey.
Plus might be worth checking out the East Med Rally for that year. It starts in May and allows you to cruises from Istanbul to Egypt in company with up to 80 other yachts, and this gives you a one month chance to check out a majority of Turkish Marinas. You can then choose a following winter location based on what you experience - rather than other opinions.
I'm not sure what the rally costs today, but when we did it in 2006 it was $250 per person. That was super value for the two months (especially as we did it 2 up) and it covered all marina fees, a party in each port, some bus trips out, and the rally team organising paperwork and officialdom.
If I had a month or two where would I go back to spend it?
If just sliding around, then probably Croatia for all the reasons others have given above. We found it truly spactacular, topping other places we've sailed in the Caribbean, Whitsundays, Indonesia, or the rest of the Med.
Enjoy it where ever you choose.
Cheers
JOHN
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:14   #11
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Wow so many detailed replies so quickly, thanks heaps to those that have posted, I really appreciate the input. Looks like Turkey gets a good run.

Brownie
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Old 02-10-2011, 13:49   #12
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Hi Buena Vista!
I just move my boat from Samos Marina in Marmaris.
I sailed from 2008 until now in Greece, after Croatia, and I wish to "touch" the Turkish shore plus the area around of Rhodos.
I wish to stay one year there before to leave to Italy.
I recomand you Marmaris area, very close to Greek Islands plus amazing Turkish shore.
Ioan
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Old 21-10-2011, 13:54   #13
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
You won't really go wrong in any of those wonderful countries.

Turkey has a few advantages: Friendlier and more welcoming people, in some ways more developed (definitely more developed than Croatia), best food, cheaper and more up to date marinas and boating infrastructure, better transport links than Croatia (fly anywhere from Istanbul). Wonderful cruising grounds. Everything very inexpensive. Highly developed maintenance and repair infrastructure, high quality work at a bargain price. Outstanding place for a refit.

I also love Croatia. It's a wilder than Turkey, with both positive and negative aspects of that. Infrastructure is much worse -- expensive and mostly rather primitive marinas (if you care about that). Difficult transport. Poor maintenance and repair infrastructure. But incredibly beautiful, wild. Probably the most beautiful place I have ever cruised.

Greece -- people can be cantankerous and unwelcoming (not the majority, but enough to spoil the impression for some cruisers), horrifying bureaucracy. But when Greece and Turkey separated, Greece got 90% of the islands -- so the cruising grounds are spectacular -- by area, at least, the best of the three. Transport links better than Croatia; not quite as good as Turkey. Food is good. Not quite as civilized as Turkey.

I think most people in your position choose Turkey -- for the simple reason of available marina berths and boatyard services at a good price, plus good transport links. If you are planning to leave your boat in a marina when you're not on board. You would not be making a mistake, because there are a lot of other advantages, too.

All my humble, subjective opinion, of course.
hahaha, you must be kidding. turkey is third world country compared to croatia. croatian marinas and facilities are one of the best in europe. defintely beter then in UK.not to mention that crotia in the whole is most peacful and safest place in europe. and food. even the italians can not wait for their "feragosto" in august to have propper meal.

turkey is poor man cruising ground.

and,no, i am not croat or have any interests or bussiness in croatia.


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Old 21-10-2011, 14:20   #14
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

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hahaha, you must be kidding. turkey is third world country compared to croatia. croatian marinas and facilities are one of the best in europe. defintely beter then in UK.not to mention that crotia in the whole is most peacful and safest place in europe. and food. even the italians can not wait for their "feragosto" in august to have propper meal.

turkey is poor man cruising ground.

and,no, i am not croat or have any interests or bussiness in croatia.


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I can't agree what you said about Turkey.
I have been in Croatia for a season and half and I have to agree that there are many nice places but, meantime, became more and more expansive.
On the other hand you have just long and narrow canals between islands where you are like on a highway with hundred and hundred of charter boats.
In front of Turkey you have Aegean Sea with the Greek Islands plus even the Turkey shore with amazing and quiet bays, marinas with the highest level of comfort plus the possibility to choice different passages, longer or shorter, with wind up to F8 during the summer.
You have to be there and after that to comment about.
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Old 21-10-2011, 17:53   #15
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Re: Turkey, Greece or Croatia?

Hi Gravosa,

I loved yr "objective" socioeconomical evaluations about Turkey, Croatia and the marinas and facilities in the UK which you say are definately worse than in Croatia..

Just by curiosity, you were saying "and,no, i am not croat or have any interests or bussiness in croatia".

And yet, on yr posting dated 28.06.2011 on the thread "croatian marinas" you said "are you shure. i am from croatia and i have never heard of that."

So, did you lose yr croatian nationality since then ?? Or maybe, being from Croatia doesn't necessarily mean being croatian ?? Lastly, have you ever been to Turkey "third world country" and chatted around with "poorman cruisers" there ??

Yeloya
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